The devastating close losses continue to pile up for the Golden State Warriors, with Harrison Barnes haunting his former team with a career-high 39 points in the Sacramento Kings 134-133 win at Chase Center on Thursday night.
After falling behind early and trailing for the first 23 minutes of the second-half, the Warriors all of a sudden found themselves in front after a Jonathan Kuminga dunk with 48 seconds to play. Yet Golden State were unable to secure a defensive rebound on two attempts the following possession, allowing Domantas Sabonis to retake the lead for Sacramento with a dunk of his own.
Kuminga lost the ball on his layup attempt after the timeout, but Kevin Hueter gave the Warriors another opportunity with two missed free-throws on the other end. The hosts refused to call another timeout, proving fateful as Stephen Curry lost the ball on a frantic final possession.
Harrison Barnes and Jonathan Kuminga each recorded career scoring nights in a high-scoring thriller between the Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings
Barnes was on fire from early in the game, nailing a series of three-pointers that provided the impetus behind a 40-point Kings first-quarter. The 2015 NBA champion had 20 of his team's 75 points by half-time, yet the Warriors remained within three thanks to 12 second-quarter points from Kuminga.
Sacramento threatened to pull away on a number of occasions in the second-half, but the Warriors remained in touching distance before Kuminga punctuated a 12-4 run to give them the lead down the stretch.
That dunk also gave Kuminga his first career 30-point game, with the 21-year-old backing up his historic 25 points on 11-of-11 shooting against the Atlanta Hawks with 31 points on 12-of-19 shooting.
Kuminga repeatedly got to the rim at will, tallying up a host of and-1 opportunities as the Kings had little answer for the rising young forward. Yet 64 combined points from he and Curry went to waste, allowing Barnes to remain the story of the night.
The one-time Warrior shot 14-of-24 from the floor, including 7-of-12 from three-point range. Sacramento rode the hot hand late, with Barnes making back-to-back mid-range jumpshots over former teammate Klay Thompson in the final minutes.
De'Aaron Fox had made back-to-back threes a little earlier, giving the star guard 29 points on 9-of-16 shooting and 3-of-7 from beyond the arc. The Kings made 22 of their 48 (45.8%) three-point attempts, yet were shaded percentage-wise by the Warriors 19-of-37 (51.4%) shooting from beyond the arc.
Curry made four threes and had 15 points in the first-quarter, before finishing with 33 on 13-of-26 shooting and 6-of-14 from deep. Andrew Wiggins had an efficient 17 on 6-of-8 shooting, while Draymond Green was again influential off the bench with 11 assists and three steals.
Kuminga was again the story for Golden State though, recording his fifth-consecutive 20-point game, all of which have come off the bench. The former seventh overall pick was a game-high +16 in just over 30 minutes, with none of the Warrior starters recording a positive plus-minus.
While there were a lot of positives, it's ultimately another rough loss Golden State simply cannot afford. They drop to 19-23 on the season ahead of a marquee matchup with the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday night.